The focal point of every dining room has to be the dining table. Without its presence, the dining room is essentially just a game – think musical chairs: a bunch of chairs in a circle, with nothing in the middle. If that was the case, then quick! Grab a chair or you'll be left to eat while standing. Starting to see why dining tables make such an impact in our daily lives? Let's face it, without them we wouldn't be able to have a nice family dinner, or entertain guests at a house party. Luckily, dining tables are available at just about any furniture store or online furniture retailer. They also come in a variety of finishes, materials and features; therefore the amount of possibilities available to you is limitless. However, with this many options, deciding on which table to get can get confusing. So here is a small list of things to cover when shopping for a dining table.
Dining chairs: As societies developed so did their need for tables. Writing, art and craftsmanship that required one to sit up found a need for tables. As labour refined so did the wealth of society providing a new meaning to the table. Formal dining tables became popular and a range of dining chairs from simple to elegant began to be manufactured around the world. Though East and West cultures viewed dining differently, chairs in one form or another became the standard when eating. Formal dining began in the castles and manors of Europe where tables were extremely long and narrow providing uses during feasts and banquets. Dining chairs started as narrow ridge forms with high backs popular for such events. During modern times the dining chair has evolved into many forms and many new materials and being used to create them from plastic and metals to more traditional materials such as wood.
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Harmonious – Lounge/Diner. A dining room off the lounge must tie in and flow-through, normally achieved with matching walls and floor coverings. Furniture must be in keeping with your existing lounge, in other words, don't try to go shabby chic if you have a modern, minimalistic lounge. Instead choose a contemporary iron dining table with sleek, clean lines and a glass top. Lounge/diners are the most difficult to decorate, get it wrong and you've compromised your main living room too. You must find the perfect balance that maintains the flow and also makes the rooms appear separate. For instance, it's better not to match colours identically but use complementary colours instead. If the colour scheme in your lounge is based around neutral olive green, perhaps go for dark red accents in your dining room.
That brings us to our next point when shopping for dining tables. Always make sure you have the space in your dining room. You never want to be stuck with a table that takes up so much room, that it doesn't leave room for dining chairs. There is still a lot more to know about the dining table. However if you want to get the skinny, then you'll have to wait for 'A Closer Look at Dining Tables, pt. 2'. For now though, I hope this article has given you a better idea as to why Dining Tables are such an important piece in our daily lives.
Capacity: Although the table should be scaled to the room, it should be scaled to your needs as well. How many visitors/Guests can you house on a single coffee table? If you host frequent large dinners, you'll need a large table. If you plan on using the dining table primarily for family meals or small gatherings, a smaller table will work better. (There's nothing inviting about four people dispersed around a 12-foot table.) If you only entertain large groups on an occasional basis, consider buying a smaller table that can expand to a certain decent size. To figure out how many people you'll be able to seat around a given table, allot 24 inches in width for each diner.